Clay County Child Custody Lawyers
Trusted Advocates for Time-Sharing Disputes in Green Cove Springs
The most sensitive and challenging part of any divorce or paternity action involves decisions about where the children are going to live. At Haslett Law, our goal is always to help our clients keep their children’s best interests in mind when making decisions regarding custody and time-sharing in Clay County.
Up-to-Date Knowledge of Changing Laws
The laws in Florida regarding child custody, as in many other areas of the country, have changed greatly in recent years. The legislature continues to propose future changes to the law. For this reason, it is imperative for you to seek representation from an experienced Clay County child custody attorney with adequate knowledge of the current laws surrounding time-sharing issues.
At Haslett Law, we take the time to explain the child custody, now called time-sharing laws, inform you of your rights and options, and the estimated costs of a custody battle. We offer knowledgeable and compassionate legal representation and remain accessible to you throughout the process. We advise our clients to take the high road when possible and remain mindful that how parents deal with each other has a lasting impact on the children and the harmony in their lives, but stand ready to be aggressive when necessary.
How Do Courts Decide Custody in Florida?
Florida courts will prioritize what is in the child’s best interests. The judge will consider many situations in the child’s life that have an influence on their upbringing. The goal is to ensure the child is set up for a thriving future, one that prioritizes his or her safety and health. The judge will strive to make sure the child can have a loving relationship with each parent.
The factors that will be considered in determining custody include:
- The child’s current home environment
- How each parent plans to support the child
- The child’s medical and educational needs
- The desire to maintain stability in the child’s life
- If a parent has had problems with substance abuse or alcoholism
- If a parent has been violent or abusive against the child or the spouse
- How the parents plan to collaborate and make decisions on how they will raise the child
The courts will also consider the child’s personal preferences. These wishes, if reasonable, can be considered in the custody arrangements. For example, if the child declares he or she prefers to stay in a certain school because that is the program he or she prefers. That child may express the need to continue living with the parent who lives near that school. If you have a custody matter to settle in Clay County, please do not hesitate to reach out to Haslett Law.
Is Florida a Mother's Right State?
If the child’s best interests are prioritized, a Florida court will always be in favor of shared parenting, whether it be joint or sole with visitation. However, if the mother is unmarried, then she has sole legal rights with the child unless the father establishes paternity. Florida law automatically designates natural custodian rights to the mother which may allow her to make the decisions regarding healthcare and education.
Both the mother and father have the right to establish paternity on behalf of the child. For the father, this can mean being part of the child’s life and making joint decisions. For the mother, paternity actions against the biological father can help take the necessary steps towards child support payments.
The laws surrounding child custody in Florida can be complex. It is important to discuss any questions you have with our attorney.
Common Custody Issues
At Haslett Law, we have extensive family law experience and are intimately familiar with Florida law, including changes, recent decisions, and the preferences of local judges. We advise clients on all issues regarding child custody and parents’ rights in each of the five major areas.
Those five major areas include:
- Parental Responsibility – The rights and duties in regard to decision-making about education, medical decisions, religious training, and other issues
- Parenting Plan – The plan specifies the parent with whom the child will reside the majority of the time and outlines the time-sharing rights of the non-residential parent
- Child Support – The amount of financial support paid from one parent to another for the care of the children
- Healthcare – This includes decisions regarding who will provide health insurance for the children and pay fees not covered by insurance
- Other Issues – All other issues surrounding children and their care, such as right of first refusal to provide care for the child, extracurricular activities, relocation limitations, and more.
In addition to counsel for issues of child custody and time-sharing, we can provide dedicated representation for your divorce or paternity case. We are committed to helping people through difficult times with aggressive and practical legal services while remaining sensitive to the children and their needs.
Call (904) 299-1188 for a free consultation to discuss your case. Our Clay County child custody lawyers are ready to guide you.
Over 20 Years' Combined Legal Experience
Advocates for Both Family Law & Criminal Defense
Very Accessible & Responsive
Husband & Wife Lawyer Team